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Columbia's promise of progress

Friday, April 24, 2009 | 4:26 p.m. CDT; updated 12:52 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Those of us who staked our future in Columbia years ago can remember what "progress" used to look like: Parkade, the first shopping center of its kind, with its veritable Flaming Pit steakhouse, on Business Loop 70; the great Columbia Mall that arose from a sprawling farm on what was then the city's western frontier; and the concrete canopy that was downtown's response to the imperative of shopping under cover.

Now we are catching our collective breath from the old boom that went bust and pinning our hopes on the new promises of the 21st century: life sciences, business incubators, data centers and a research reactor poised to become a global player in the production of medical isotopes.

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